How Often Should Operators Inspect Their ForkliftOne of the most frequent questions we hear from operators and employers is how often should the operators inspect their forklift they’re using. The inspection helps the operators to detect flaws of the equipment during pre-operation to maintain the optimum operational capability of the truck.

Operators have to inspect their powered industrial trucks at least once on a daily basis, if the warehouse operation is 24x7 and the forklift is also utilized in the same frequency, then the truck should be inspected before the beginning of every shift to detect any faults and mechanical issues that might occurred during the previous shift. This forklift inspection requirement is in compliance with OSHA’ standard at 1910.178(q)(7).

If the operator is able to spot any possible troubles and would-be problems early, he must report it to this supervisor immediately to tag the forklift out. Doing this could prevent simple problem to escalate to a bigger one. The forklift can then be sent to undergo maintenance and repair.

However, OSHA Doesn’t Need the Forklift Inspection to be Documented

In the latest OSHA Powered Industrial Truck 1910.178 standard, you would not find any requirement that the inspection has to be documented. However, doing so is a good practice because of two-fold reasons. First, carrying out a forklift inspection and recording will be able you to monitor the equipment’s general condition just like servicing your car and logging it into your maintenance record. Second, in the event the company premise is inspected by an OSHA assessor, you can present documentary proof that the forklift has undergone such daily inspection in compliance with 1910.178(q)(7).

If you are thinking how long do you keep forklift inspection records, it is all up to your discretion and judgment to decide how long you should keep the record as long as you can retrieve it during OSHA workplace safety audit.

Keeping a Forklift Inspection Checklist

One of the most important parts of safe forklift operation in the workplace is performing a forklift inspection. It is to identify small fault to prevent it from becoming a serious one.

The forklift operators who are in close contact need to know that they compelled to report any problem with the truck by checking its general condition and signs of wear and tear. Reporting the potential issues early helps prevent the forklift to become unsafe during work operation.

You can use a forklift inspection checklist to record any issues. An innovative checklist has to contain visual and operational pre-use inspection.

The visual pre-use check contains the overall condition of the truck;

  • Cleared flooring without any foreign object littered on the floor
  • Fire extinguisher provision and it has to be appropriate for that type of forklift; fluid levels such as engine oil, water, and fuel levels
  • Fully charged battery
  • Loosed or missing nuts and bolts, part and component of the truck, chains and pins, and hoses and fittings
  • Condition of the tires
  • Condition of the mast and forks
  • Condition of warning lights and horns
  • Presence of seatbelt and resistant harness, condition overhead guard and protector

The operational pre-use inspection contains the following tasks:

  • The condition of the foot brake and inching pedals, it is too loose or hard to press
  • Parking brake and dead man seat brake if it holds and in working state
  • Are dash gauges working
  • Is the steering, tilt and lift mechanisms operates effortlessly
  • Are the lights including the warning lights working properly
  • Checking of the forklift’s data plate to verify its load capacity
  • The equipment’s mast full height
  • Condition of the transmission, does it respond accordingly when it is reversed or move forward
  • Are the instruments panels lit up and work accurately

Any forklift that is found unsafe during the inspection must be removed to be serviced or repaired. Such recording must be done in order to monitor its maintenance schedule. Its record should also be kept in case the forklift involved in an accident to verify its maintenance record.

Maintenance of Forklift Inspection Checklist

The forklift inspection checklist is to ensure that your equipments are being kept in good working condition and are safe to operate.

If you are needing one for your record, here are the downloadable forms you can keep:

These forms are not ours but are distributed to be used. You can edit or modify according to your liking and need.

To Conclude This

The operators should inspect the forklift at least daily and during every work shift. Maintaining the record is a good custom you can do as an employer. Accidents involving forklifts happen anytime, if you had one and injury and death was the case, OSHA could go to the scene to conduct the investigation and scrutinize the record. They will request you for the involved forklift’s inspection and maintenance documents. Failure to provide, may hold you liable.

Your question on how often should operators inspect their forklift had been answered. We hope we’ve enlightened you on this issue. If you have any more inquiries and follow up questions, don’t hesitate to contact us, we will try to respond to you as soon as possible.

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